Quintet acts on Webull’s Nasdaq debut via USD7.3bn SPAC listing

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Kirkland & Ellis, Ogier, Han Kun Law Offices, Wilson Sonsini, and Maples Group are acting on the online trading platform Webull’s proposed USD7.3 billion merger with a blank-cheque firm in a SPAC listing on the Nasdaq.

The merger with the Nasdaq-listed SK Growth Opportunities is expected to be completed in the third or fourth quarter, making it the biggest SPAC listing among Chinese companies within five years.

A blank-cheque firm, also known as a special purpose acquisition company (SPAC), raises funds through the IPO with the intention of merging with a private company. Once the merger is complete, the private company becomes the surviving entity.

Kirkland is advising Webull on US law, led by corporate partner Jesse Sheley, and capital market partners Steve Lin, Christian Nagler and Justin Zhou. Some 14 other partners are providing support on banking, employee benefits, executive compensation, employment and labour, international trade and national security, investment funds, technology and IP, government and internal investigations, and taxation matters.

Ogier and Han Kun are acting as Cayman Islands and PRC counsel, respectively, to Webull.

Wilson Sonsini and Maples are advising the SPAC on US and Cayman Islands law, respectively.

Webull, founded by Wang Anquan, a former executive of Chinese tech giants Alibaba and Xiaomi, has made several attempts to go public via an IPO in the US but has been declined.

US CEO Anthony Denier attributed Webull’s failure to its cryptocurrency service launched in 2022, which was given “unfriendly” treatment by the SEC, Bloomberg reported.

The online brokerage discontinued the digital asset unit by the end of the third quarter of 2023.

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